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Be Inspired! (Part Three)

TAL Seedling in a hand

Spring has sprung, so what now? Be Inspired! Spring is a magical time as the plants in the garden start sharing their bounty. Plant some seeds and watch them grow. As long as there is some sunshine and they are kept moist, most seeds will sprout in no time.

Teachers often use the humble green bean as a tool to show how a plant grows. A bean placed between two layers of cotton wool if kept moist, will become a magnificent plant, bearing edible yumminess! Give your child a window box or spot in the garden to experiment with growing stuff to eat. My dad showed us how to grow popcorn by planting the popcorn seeds that we had bought to make popcorn to eat. It was incredible to see them grow. I mean, who knew that you could pop popcorn in the ground and that it would grow into a one and a half metre plant which made more popcorn for us to pop!

Take your child to the supermarket or nursery and let them choose the seeds they want. Some take longer than others, but the wait is always worth it. Some baby tomatoes with a basil plant to make a tomato and basil salad, perhaps some carrots or maybe some lettuce whose leaves can be picked and eaten straight from the plant. Growing vegetables and herbs is really easy and will teach patience and perseverance, but most of all, eating something that you have grown is one of the best feelings in the world!

All that playing with soil, seeing the worms, crying when bugs have eaten all the new leaves and you have to start over again – all such a fun learning experience. Gardening shows children that food does not magically appear in the shops, but has to be grown and processed (even if it is just washing off the dust) before it is available for us to eat.

Do you garden with your children? What do you grow?